Want unlimited texts? Circumvent the phone companies with these free texting apps

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There are so many different plans and options when it comes to your cell phone that sometimes it’s hard to decide what you can afford and what’s worth it for your lifestyle. Among the decisions when choosing a cell phone plan is whether to include unlimited texting, and we can safely say most of us opt in. Well, my friends, if you want to save some money and keep the texts coming, there are a few apps that might be able to do that for you for free.

Text Me!

Text Me!

With Text Me!, you can text anyone in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia, China, Pakistan, the United Kingdom, and many other countries around the world for free. Once sent, recipients will receive your text like any other. Furthermore, if you want to call or video chat, both parties need only the Text Me! service. Users can also send pictures, video, and voice texts, and after signing up with their Facebook account or email address, the app accesses your phone’s address book to discover which of your contacts also possess the service. 

Once you select who you want to text, you can quickly share your location, use emoticons, or even send a photo or voice clip to the desired recipient with a mere press of a button. Text Me! works on credit, initially supplying only 10, but various activities like watching videos from the company will earn you additional credit. However, you can always pay $1 for 40 credits or $10 for 500 if you’d like to forgo the promotional avenue. Additionally, although texting inside the United States doesn’t utilize in-app credits – regardless of whether the recipient posses the app – contacting others outside the U.S. who don’t have the app will.

Available on: iOSAndroid, and Windows Phone

WhatsApp

WhatsApp

With more than 200 million monthly active users, it’s safe to say WhatsApp is popular. The service is also comparably cheap, offering free service for a year and providing subsequent plans for merely $1 on both iOS and Android devices thereafter. Aside from the usual text features, WhatsApp prides itself on its intuitive and streamlined group chat capabilities. With group chat, users can include up to 30 participants in a conversation and send subtle maps, image clips, and audio samples that display nicely without taking over the screen.

Additionally, the cross-platform app works with your existing number, allowing you to name yourself and add a profile image. Calls go directly through your regular cell carrier instead of the app, and though it can’t connect to Facebook, posting statuses within WhatsApp is always welcome. Plus, WhatsApp’s terms of use forbid terrorists … which is always a nice little perk for those of you who refuse to associate with known criminals … not that terrorists like to make themselves known.

Available on: iOSAndroidBlackberry, and Windows Phone

Viber

Viber

Viber has more than 200 million users, and we’re assuming they’re not the same people using WhatsApp. With Viber, you can create a group conversation touting 40 people, intertwining emoticon-like stickers wherever you see fit. For instance, phrases like “let’s roll” can automatically become joyous sushi puns, complete with a rolling board and animated ball of wasabi to match (pictured above). The app also features Facebook integration sans status updates, so your friends may try to hit you up on Viber at times when you’d rather them not.

Moreover, recent app updates boast a slew of additional emoticons, along with the ability to doodle on photo posts and show if message have been read. Viber is completely free, meaning international and domestic calls, texts, and the like won’t chip away at your wallet. Simply put, the app is definitely one of the best – if not the best – options out there.

 Available on: iOSAndroidBlackBerryWindows PhoneWindowsMac OS X, and Linux

Pinger

pinger

To be modest about it, Pinger has a really nice appearance — almost comforting nice. Its navigation menu is primarily based on photos, so clicking a contact’s face grants access to every text, call, photo, and voicemail you’ve ever exchanged with said person. Profile images are directly synced via Facebook to ensure you aren’t required to snap a pic yourself, and the service even provides users with a specific number other than the one tied to their cell phone. Additionally, the app features the same ability to view when a message has been seen as Viber, so you can always be confident users have read your message and are simply being bastards about responding to it. Oy vey!

You can contact anyone you want with Pinger, for free, regardless if they have an account in United States, Canada, or any one of the 35 or so countries included with the service. As previously mentioned, Pinger also provides a voicemail box, making viewing messages a snap no matter where you are. Unfortunately, the app can’t make emergency calls and remains chock full of few ads some time after its initial debut, but you’d be hard pressed to find a more solid program for the price.

 Available on: iOS and Android

Our top free texting app picks aren’t for everyone — no matter how hard we try. Be sure to check out Facebook Messenger, Apple iMessage, and Google Hangouts as well. Most chatting apps are finding new ways to integrate SMS these days. Let us know in the comments below if you have another, free-texting solution worth noting.

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